If you’re looking for something unique for your sweetie this year for Valentine’s Day, Dianna Stampfler of Promote Michigan has 14 gift ideas and activities to consider. As usual, we’d love it if you’d add any other suggestions in the comments!
SEX. Nobody bottles it like Larry Mawby of L. Mawby Vineyards in Suttons Bay. This sparkling brut rose wine is a provocative blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes that appeals to the senses … pinkish salmon in hue with red fruit aromas and yeasty accents … and bubbles that tickle your nose and provide a soft delicious taste.
Chocolate Indulgence Pedicure at the Solace Spa at Mountain Grand Lodge and the Spa at Inn at Bay Harbor. Indulge your “sweetie” with this special chocolate pedicure. During this pedicure your feet are wrapped with a warm chocolate mask to melt away any tension. Continue this luxury while our therapist provides a soothing massage with white chocolate soufflÃ© lotion. This pedicure also includes nail grooming, cuticle maintenance and polish.
Sweet Tooth Cooking Class. What better way to celebrate your love than to share some sweet sensations with your special someone? In this hand-on class from Sue Chef, Chef Kathleen Schiefler of Grand River Grocery shows each couple how to make scrumptious hand-dipped chocolate strawberries and truffles, Classic Italian tiramisu, Silky CrÃ¨me Brule and Molten Chocolate Lava Cake. After creating these luscious treats enjoy a glass of champagne and enjoy the fruits(or should we say – sweets!) of your labor. From 6-7:30pm at Michaels & Associates.
Truffles from Grocer’s Daughter in Empire. Try the 4-piece Spirit Collection where the all-natural chocolate truffles are infused with Courvoisier, cherry brandy, Grand Marnier and whiskey. The truffles are made with herbs, edible flowers, local honey and citrus zest and each is handmade with special decoration.
Zhivago Nights. This grand Garland Resort evening begins with a horse-drawn sleigh ride to the Bridge Inn, outlined with hundreds of tiny lights. It’s there you’ll recline by the fire, awaiting your five-course, wild-game dinner, paired with exquisite wines. Zhivago Night is the most fun, intimate and exciting meal event held at Garland. Another unique offering is the Gourmet Glide, where you cross country ski throughout the property to strategically-placed food stations including a chance to catch your own fresh trout and have it grilled up trailside. Lodging packages are also offered.
Romantic Horse Drawn Carriage Rides. Snuggle up with the one you love as you enjoy a leisurely ride through downtown Grand Rapids in a 19th Century Vis-Ã -vis white carriage from Grand Carriages. During the tour, travel through Ah-Nab-Awen Park and over the lighted bridges crossing the Grand River while listening to the clip-clop of horses hoofs. All this while wrapped in carriage blankets to keep warm during the crisp winter evenings. Rides are offered from 6-11pm.
Love is in the Air. Throughout the entire month of February, Tabor Hill Winery & Restaurant in Buchanan is offering special Dessert Wine Flights featuring the 2006 Vidal Blanc Ice Wine, Cherry Wine and CrÃ¨me Sherry. While you’re there, enjoy a fine dinner overlooking the vineyard.
Two Hearted Ale. Bell’s Beer in Kalamazoo is well known for its unique microbrews and this selection has a romantic undertone. Two Hearted Ale is an India Pale Ale style well suited for Hemingway-esque trips to the Upper Peninsula. American malts and enormous hop additions give this beer a crisp finish and incredible floral hop aroma.
Culinary Escape Package: Cooking with Chocolate. Celebrate your passion for chocolate with a weekend devoted to the ultimate indulgence, February 16-18 at Grand Traverse Resort & Spa in Acme. The resort’s award-winning chefs will share their secrets for many chocolate creations from main dishes to sensational sweets. Discover the many varieties of chocolate and the many culinary delights they create.
Sweetheart Sampler Culinary Tour. The Grand Escape Inns of Saugatuck invites you to their annual theme weekend, February 16-18, including two nights lodging, a Friday welcoming party, chocolate, hors d’oeuvres and music. On Saturday evening, enjoy a romantic candlelight dinner featuring a gourmet multi-course meal – each at a different inn.
Cupid’s Arrow Wine Trail Event. Spend a romantic weekend touring the beautiful Lake Michigan Shore wine region, February 17-18. Enjoy appetizers paired with award winning wines at each of the wineries and then spend some time sampling other fine varietals. Tours are offered Noon-5pm each day.
Josh Groban & John Mayer. Give tickets two each of these artists who will make appearances with days of each other at Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids. Multi-platinum selling, pop/classical artist Josh Groban returns on February 20 at 8pm in support of his new album ‘Awake.’ (Ticket: $49.50-$79.50). Then, guitarist, vocalist and songwriter John Mayer brings his tour to town February 22 at 7:30pm. John has proven himself as a pop, rock and blues artist with chart-topping singles, millions of albums sold world-wide and multiple Grammy awards, including Best Male Pop Vocal Performance and Song of the Year, among others.
The Seasons of the EmmaLee. Everyone loves a good love story, and this first novel by Michael Lindley of Ada make a great gift for the book lover in your life. Set in the resort town of Charlevoix, it takes readers back in time to the early 1940s where the lives a young woman of privilege and the son of a local boat builder find their lives brought together. The story also features a current-day element, bringing together a man and woman with ties to the past. The common ground for both stories is the majestic EmmaLee.
Somewhere in Time. This classic was filmed at the famed Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island. Purchase a copy on DVD or rent it and settle in for romantic evening with Christopher Reeve and Jane Seymour. Those who want to take the romance a step farther can escape to the Grand for their annual “Somewhere in Time Weekend,” October 26-28.